This weekend is the big weekend where Pres. Obama is the commencement speaker at Notre Dame and receives an honorary degree.
It is a disgrace on Notre Dame, of course. Obama's total disregard of the sanctity of human life at it's earliest stages and beyond and his promotion and votes that advocate the destruction of unborn children should be shunned, not honored at any Catholic institution.
But the sad truth is that so many Catholics only call themselves themselves Catholic. They don't adhere to, or even really believe (or in many cases, even know) the teachings of our faith.
So, to be honest, I didn't expect ANY controversy over Pres. Obama speaking at Notre Dame. I think Obama charmed those 'in name only' Catholics during the election and they justify their vote and their support of him and ignore their faith while doing it.
So when there actually was controversy, I was shocked and pleased. The notion that many graduates are skipping their own graduation to make it clear that they do not approve of a pro-abortion President being honored, makes me feel that there still are young people who care about their faith. When 68 American Bishops oppose publicly Obama speaking at Notre Dame, it fills my heart with hope. There was at time when I didn't have much faith in American Bishops to ever say or do the right thing, so now that they are, I have great hope for my Church in the United States. More than 353,000 people have signed a petition against Obama speaking and being honored.
But the most telling and brave sign of protest is Mary Ann Glendon, The most accomplished Catholic laywoman in America, declining the Laetare Medal and not speaking at the graduation. Glendon is the former the former U.S. ambassador to the Vatican and now a Harvard professor.
She wrote to the Pres. of Notre Dame of her decision after she realized that he was using her in his"talking points" saying that she would be speaking as well, as to counteract that a pro-abortionist President would be speaking. She wrote in part about Pres. Obama's invitation:
"This, as you must know, was in disregard of the U.S. bishops’ express request of 2004 that Catholic institutions “should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles” and that such persons “should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions.”
The Bishops made it quite clear that no honors should be given to those who act "in defiance of our fundamental moral principles." Pres. Obama has acted in defiance of the fundamental moral principal that all life, including the unborn, is sacred and should be treated as such. One can agree or disagree with that, but that was the Bishops statement and request, and the President of Notre Dame clearly ignored it.
Make no mistake about it, Pres. Obama will speak this weekend. I knew that any one who had so little respect for Catholic teaching that he would invite Pres. Obama to begin with, would never rescind the invitation. But the fact that so many devout Catholics, including the students and these Bishops, have stood up for our faith and stood their ground, fills me with hope for the future.
People like Father Jenkins may be a sell out, we devout Catholics are used to them by now, but there are still brave Bishops and women like Mary Ann Glendon, willing to take a stand for the most vulnerable of our society, the ones who cannot speak for themselves....... the unborn.
It's a good day when that happens, no matter when or where Pres. Obama speaks. No matter what a smooth talker someone may be, or how much they charm us, we know now that there will never be silence in the face of the horror that is abortion. We will never be still.